Business Briefs: Pittsburgh 2030 District expands to Oakland

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Pittsburgh 2030 District expands to Oakland

An initiative to get Downtown businesses to commit to slashing energy use, water consumption and vehicle emissions by 50 percent by 2030 got a boost Thursday as Pittsburgh 2030 District welcomed Oakland into its program, along with 21 new participating organizations.

Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald, Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto, council members and the Heinz Endowments gathered at Soldiers & Sailors Memorial Hall & Museum in Oakland to mark the announcement that the Green Building Alliance’s Pittsburgh 2030 District would expand into Oakland.

Engineers union retaining Highmark exclusively

The Pittsburgh-headquartered International Union of Operating Engineers Local No. 66 announced that its 7,000 Western Pennsylvania and eastern Ohio members will retain Highmark Inc. as the union’s “exclusive” health insurance provider. The union announced a multiyear commitment Thursday.

U.S. economy’s 4.2% growth beats forecast

After a bleak start to the year, the U.S. economy grew at a brisk annual rate of 4.2 percent in the April-June quarter, the Commerce Department said Thursday, slightly faster than it had first estimated. The seasonally adjusted growth rate for the gross domestic product — the nation’s total output of goods and services — came after the economy had shrunk at a 2.1 percent annual rate in the January-March quarter.

Apple says it will unveil new iPhones Sept. 9

Apple is holding a Sept. 9 event, where the company is said to be preparing to debut new iPhones and a wearable device. The unveiling will be held at the Flint Center for the Performing Arts near Apple’s headquarters in Cupertino, Calif., the company said in an emailed invitation Thursday.

USDA launches new dairy insurance program

Dairy farmers squeezed in recent years by low milk prices and high feed costs can begin signing up next week for a new program replacing old subsidies that didn’t factor in the price of corn. The new program is a kind of insurance that pays farmers when the difference between milk prices and feed prices shrink to a certain level. The previous program paid farmers when milk prices sank too low, but it didn’t account for their costs.

Pending home sales up 3.3 percent in July

The National Association of Realtors said Thursday that its seasonally adjusted pending home sales index rose 3.3 percent to 105.9 in July. Still, the index remains 2.1 percent below its level a year ago.

Workers cheer restored Market Basket CEO

Arthur T. Demoulas made a triumphant return Thursday to lead the Market Basket supermarket chain. Six weeks ago employees of the New England chain walked off their jobs after he was fired. Customers soon followed by boycotting the stores. Late Wednesday, the company announced that an agreement had been reached for Mr. Demoulas to pay $1.5 billion for the 50.5 percent of the company owned by his cousin and rival, Arthur S. Demoulas, and other family members. Workers and customers celebrated Thursday at a rally outside the chain’s Tewksbury, Mass., headquarters.

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